Monday, January 3, 2011

Cooking Weekend - the last night

For all of the time I spent being lazy last weekend, I think I was still quite productive. The house is clean, laundry is done, tub is re-caulked, driveway is cleared and the freezer is bursting with lunches for a while. And even though sleeping in for me is only 8:30, it was very nice while it lasted. This morning's alarm was. not. cool. ugh. But, as I tell Riley each morning, I have to go to work or we'd have to live in the car and she doesn't like the car. Hi ho hi ho...

Yesterday marked the last of the recipes of the weekend. I made a second batch of the Chocolate Crunch cookies (with chow mein noodles this time) and they are now residing on the counter at work. Hopefully they will get eaten or I will end up eating them all! After the first batch of cookies, Riley and I went to indoor play time at the local dog training place. It was fun to watch the hyper puppies run around with each other. Riley however, is 11. And wanted nothing to do with them. We did some walking around and she ran for a bit but then she stared at the door and sighed. Yes, my dog actually sighs. Well it was fun for a bit anyway.

Next I was on to the Roasted Vegetables. I know it's really more of a side dish but I made so much of it I guess I'll be having them for lunch alone. So tasty though!
5 Herb Roasted Vegetables
(recipe origin unknown, handwritten recipe card from so far back I can't remember)

2 lb tiny new potatoes (I used fingerling instead, they were so pretty!)
3 medium carrots, cut small (to save time I used the baby carrots whole)
1 onion
2 tbsp snipped chives
1 tbsp snipped oregano
1 tbsp snipped italian parsley
2 tbsp snipped rosemary
1 tsp snipped sage
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp melted butter
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Spray 13 x 9" pan with cooking spray. Scrub and cut potatoes. Combine herbs, butter and olive oil in large bowl (or in extra large zip-seal bag). Add potatoes, carrots and onions, mix until evenly coated. Add mixture to pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes. Uncover, stir and bake for an additional 10-20 minutes until potatoes are tender.

I set the melted butter aside to cool slightly and found it a few hours later as I was cleaning up. Oops. Didn't seem to hurt too much although I bet the veggies would have had a bit more crispy to them if I'd remembered. Also I cooked mine almost an hour but I didn't cut the veggies very small. Smaller veggies, less time of course. One could easily add other veggies like squash and zucchini but I'm pretty simple when it comes to my veggies. Served with a spoonful of sour cream and it says comfort food to me.

The final recipe (cue the horns and trumpets fanfare) Linzertorte Thumbprint Cookies. I got this recipe from the ReadyMade magazine, which I highly recommend for all kinds of fun and kooky crafts and neat money saving ideas. I was looking for a good way to enjoy my sister's cinnamon jelly and this seemed to be the ticket.

1/3 cup hazelnuts, toasted and skins removed
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1-1/2 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground cloves
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 tsp finely shredded lemon peel (peel from 1 lemon)
1/3 cup seedless red raspberry jam
Powdered sugar to top, optional

1. Preheat oven to 325°. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
2. In a food processor bowl combine hazelnuts and powdered sugar. Process until nuts are finely ground. In a small bowl combine flour, cocoa powder, cinnamon, and cloves.
3. In a medium bowl beat butter and lemon peel on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add the hazelnut-sugar mixture. Beat until mixture is combined. Beat in the flour mixture until combined.
4. Shape dough into 1-inch balls and place 2 inches apart on prepared baking sheet. Using your thumb, make an indentation in the center of each ball of dough.
5. Bake for 8 minutes, then remove from the oven and fill cookie centers with jam. Bake for 6 to 8 minutes more or until bottoms are light golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool. Sift powdered sugar over the tops of cookies, if desired. Place a single layer of filled cookies in an airtight container and store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze up to 3 months.

I'm not sure if I love these. And I'm not really sure what about them I would change to love them more. I do think I could have baked them the entire time with the jelly as it didn't seem like it got baked enough. Also, they baked for almost 10 minutes (instead of the recommended 6-8) with the jelly on and they still seem almost just done. In any case, I still ate them!

I realized after this weekend that most families cook meals every night. Being single, I have the luxury of being lazy about my food, thus this weekend was outside my reality. I don't eat out a lot but have been known to have PB&J or cereal for dinner. I also realized that when I am responsible for the health and nutrition of my little girl my gourmet (ha) ways will change. I promise I won't post every meal like I did this weekend :-)

Now back to our regular programming...

1 comment:

  1. I remember my mother making thumbprint cookies... I never liked them. The choc. cookies.. yummmmm remember them too. :-)

    I feel for you. I am going to have to go from eating cereal for dinner or maybe salsa and chips to actually cooking something.

    I decided to order a ton of spices (I mean a ton ) from and cook up a bunch of dishes before I go back for embassy. I also make pasta sauce and freeze it. Finally, I bought a rice cooker that is amazing and can be set to a timer. That is how I am hoping to get through meals.. that and a hope my kids grow to love cereal as much as I do for snacks, breakfast. ;-)